Candied Coconut Sweet Potatoes

This recipe was passed onto me by my Aunt Barb and she told me she first remembers eating it at her aunt’s home for Thanksgiving when she was a little girl.  So it’s been in our family for over 40 years!  When something has been around for 40 years and people are still making it, you know it’s good!  Not a single Thanksgiving goes by withtout this dish on our table.  

If you haven’t tried it yet, you probably need to.

Sweet Potato Recipe Candied Coconut Sweet Potatoes

modifying a classic

I know this recipe has already become a favorite for a lot of you out there since I first shared it, but I decided it needed a little make-over and some new pictures. I altered the recipe a bit based partly on your comments! It was no secret these were very sweet, so I played around with it and found I could cut down the sugar by quite a bit. (From one cup to 6 tablespoons!)

less butter & Sugar, but still amazing

I also cut down the butter by a couple of tablespoons in the sweet potatoes and a couple of tablespoons in the topping. So all in all I removed almost 2/3 cup sugar and a half a stick of butter, but it still tastes sweet and rich and perfect. Now you can spend those calories on an extra slice of pie. I also used fresh sweet potatoes after shocking some of you foodies by admitting that my family has been making this with canned ones for years.

Sweet Potato Recipe Candied Coconut Sweet Potatoes

Honestly folks? there’s not all that much difference in the finished product, so I say go with whatever your little heart desires (pssst, I almost always use canned.)

Fyi, if you only want to make a half-batch, like to put in n 8x8 pan or pie plate, then those mini cans of sweetened condensed milk are the exact amount you need- just one mini can. I show a picture of the mini cans in this post. Also refer to that post if you make a full batch, and you're wondering how to use the other half of that can of sweetened condensed milk.

You’ll mix up sweet potatoes, butter, a little sugar, vanilla, eggs (I know what you’re thinking: this is sounding like pie) and the secret ingredient, sweetened condensed milk.

Sweet Potato Recipe Thanksgiving Side Dish Candied Coconut Sweet Potatoes

FYI, if you only want to make a half-batch, like to put in n 8×8 pan or pie plate (which is actually what I’m doing in these photos) then those mini cans of sweetened condensed milk are the exact amount you need- just one mini can. I show a picture of the mini cans in this post. Also refer to that post if you make a full batch, and you’re wondering how to use the other half of that can of sweetened condensed milk.  Spread that out into a casserole dish.

Fyi, if you only want to make a half-batch, like to put in n 8x8 pan or pie plate, then those mini cans of sweetened condensed milk are the exact amount you need- just one mini can. I show a picture of the mini cans in this post. Also refer to that post if you make a full batch, and you're wondering how to use the other half of that can of sweetened condensed milk.

Now the topping.  OH THE TOPPING.  In my family, we always double the topping.  Three simple ingredients that are oh so amazing when they get all caramelized in the oven.

Sweet Potato Recipe Candied Coconut Sweet Potatoes

Sprinkle that on top.  Seriously guys this whole recipe takes less than 10 minutes to whip up.

Sweet Potato Recipe Candied Coconut Sweet Potatoes

Bake it for about 40 minutes and the potatoes puff up and the topping turns into heaven. 

Sweet Potato Recipe Candied Coconut Sweet Potatoes

They’re kiiiiinda amazing.

Sweet Potato Recipe Candied Coconut Sweet Potatoes

Chances are if you try them once, they’ll become a tradition!

Sweet Potato Recipe Candied Coconut Sweet Potatoes

 

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Candied Coconut Sweet Potatoes


Description

These candied coconut sweet potatoes will be the star of your Thanksgiving table! Creamy sweet potatoes with a caramelized coconut topping. To. Die. For.


Ingredients

  • 4 cups mashed sweet potatoes (about 4 medium sweet potatoes or two 29-ounce cans, drained and rinsed)
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 6 tablespoons butter (no margarine), softened or melted
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 of a 14 ounce can Sweetened Condensed Milk (about 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Topping

  • If you’re feeling naughty you can double this part…
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups sweetened coconut flakes
  • 6 tablespoons melted butter

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Add sweet potatoes, sugar, butter, eggs, sweetened condensed milk, and vanilla to a bowl and mix with an electric mixer until creamy. Spread in a 9×13 pan.
  3. Mix topping ingredients together until everything is incorporated and sprinkle over sweet potatoes.
  4. Bake for 40-50 minutes until topping is golden brown.

Notes

  • You can make these a day ahead of time and then bake when ready!

94 comments

  1. I always feel sorry for the sweet potatoes at our Thanksgiving dinner because no one ever eats them. I’m tempted to trust you Sara and try these out this year.

  2. I promise, I’m not being stingy with the sugar here! πŸ™‚ I’m wondering if maybe if fresh sweet potatoes are sweeter than canned sweet potatoes? Because 1/2 c. sugar is *more* than enough with fresh, bordering on too much. Like sweeter, hands-down, than any dessert we have for Thanksgiving.

    But I agree with doubling the topping… πŸ™‚

  3. Oh my gosh . . . this AND rosemary facaccia! I wonder if this would also be amazing as a pie? I am going to try this and maybe give it a try as a pie! Coconut cream sweet potatoes . . .

  4. DOUBLE THE TOPPING!!!! I have been eating these for years and I think it is worth it to include ALL the sugar and twice the topping. It’s Thanksgiving for crying out loud, when else are you going to eat that way?!

  5. Okay, one more thing and then I promise I’ll shut up! πŸ™‚ I’ve made these a couple of days ahead of time and stored them in the fridge until we’re ready to cook them–just wait to add the topping until you’re ready to bake them. A super-easy way to cut down on your Thanksgiving stress.

  6. Oh yeah. . . that’s what I’m talkin’ about.

    I honestly never really loved Thanksgiving until I met this recipe. (thanks Aunt Barb) I dream about these sweet potatoes year round.

    Plus this recipe has made me famous at church parties.

    Oh, and Sara – I love your knowledge of Yams vs. Sweet Potatoes.

  7. Oh, I was also going to say that I’m a stickler on only using fresh yams, but I also get that that’s not always realistic… πŸ™‚

  8. These are sosososososososo good!!! Seriously, everyone here LOVES them and is shocked that a girl not from the South can make the best sweet potatoes they’ve ever had!

    I’ve been cutting the white sugar in the potatoes down to 1/2 c. and it’s still really, really sweet so I’ve been considering cutting it even further. But seriously, my husband HATES sweet potatoes (I know, I know, you’re SHOCKED) and he loves these. So all of you who don’t like them, give these a shot!

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